×

Here's how key people are reacting to a Brexit

Vote leave supporters wave Union flags, following the result of the EU referendum, outside Downing Street in London, Britain June 24, 2016.
Neil Hall | Reuters
Vote leave supporters wave Union flags, following the result of the EU referendum, outside Downing Street in London, Britain June 24, 2016.

The United Kingdom's vote to leave the European Union sent the world's corporations and leaders scrambling to react to sudden, global volatility. Here's a round-up of key first reactions:

Banks

Morgan Stanley:
"The UK's vote to leave the European Union is a very significant decision which will have a considerable impact, the extent of which will not be known for some time. There will be at least a period of two years before an actual exit takes place, so there will be time to implement any changes required to adjust our business to the new environment. Morgan Stanley will continue to monitor developments very closely and will adapt accordingly while prioritising the interests of our clients, our shareholders and our employees."

Goldman Sachs:
"We respect the decision of the British electorate and have been focused on planning for either referendum outcome for many months. Goldman Sachs has a long history of adapting to change, and we will work with relevant authorities as the terms of the exit become clear. Our primary focus, as always, remains serving our clients' needs." — Lloyd Blankfein, Goldman CEO

Deutsche Bank:
"I'm afraid that this is not such a good day for Europe. At this stage, we cannot fully foresee the consequences, but there's no doubt that they will be negative on all sides. As a bank headquartered in Germany and with a strong presence in the UK, we are well prepared. However, there's no doubt that the uncertainty created by the referendum's results will be a challenge.

"Let me add a personal note: I am a strong supporter of the European project, which has brought peace and prosperity for more than 50 years. As a Briton and a European, it especially saddens me that Europe has obviously lost its attractiveness for many of my fellow countrymen. It's a clear signal to the EU to get closer to its people and to strengthen democracy." — John Cryan, co-CEO of Deutsche Bank

Barclays:
"This is a significant decision and there will be many questions asked in the coming days and weeks about what happens next. The answers are complex but our position is not: we will not break our stride in delivering the Barclays of the future.

"We have stood in service of our customers and clients for over 325 years. We have been here for them through equally profound changes before. And no matter what has been laid before us, we have been here to help them achieve their ambitions.

"That does not change today. ... The strategy we announced on 1 March, 2016 was not conditional on the UK remaining in the EU. We are a transatlantic consumer, corporate and investment bank, anchored in the UK and the US." — Jes Staley, Barclays CEO

JPMorgan Chase:
"J.P. Morgan has 16,000 employees in the U.K. We are extremely proud of the work they do and our long history in the country. Regardless of today's outcome, we will maintain a large presence in London, Bournemouth and Scotland, serving local clients as we have for more than 150 years.

"...In the months ahead, however, we may need to make changes to our European legal entity structure and the location of some roles. While these changes are not certain, we have to be prepared to comply with new laws as we serve our clients around the world. We will always do our best to take care of our people and do the right thing during times of change." — CEO Jamie Dimon, JPMorgan Asset Management CEO Mary Erdoes, and Daniel Pinto, JPMorgan's chief executive for corporate and investment

BNP Paribas:
ENG "BNP Paribas acknowledges the decision of the British people. Our immediate priority is to continue to serve our clients and to bring them the necessary support in order to accompany them in this period of high market volatility. Our clients can count on BNP Paribas for full support. With its limited exposure to the United Kingdom (6% of the Group's total commitments and 2.5% of the Group's Operating Income) and a diversified business model both in terms of geographical mix and business mix, BNP Paribas benefits from a proven track record of adapting effectively to change and is able to accompany its clients in this new environment."

Citi:
"Citi has been preparing for this potential outcome for many months and we are well positioned to continue to support our clients through this period of uncertainly."

Financial Services

American Express:
"I can tell you that we don't expect yesterday's vote to have any immediate impact on our business." — Marina Hoffmann Norville, American Express vice president

MasterCard:
"Despite today's vote, it's business as usual for us. There is no operational impact on our payments network in the UK or around the world. We have — and continue to — deliver an efficient way to pay and be paid. Our network continue to operate safely and securely in over 210 countries around the world."

Government

U.S. Treasury Department:
"The people of the United Kingdom have spoken and we respect their decision. We will work closely with both London and Brussels and our international partners to ensure continued economic stability, security, and prosperity in Europe and beyond.

"We continue to monitor developments in financial markets. I have been in regular contact in recent weeks with my counterparts and financial market participants in the UK, EU and globally and we are continuing to consult closely. The UK and other policymakers have the tools necessary to support financial stability, which is key to economic growth." - Treasury Secretary Jack Lew

U.S. Chamber of Commerce:
"The British people have opted for change. Whether this break with the status quo benefits the U.K. in the long run will depend chiefly on the choices awaiting policymakers in the months ahead.

"While some uncertainty is unavoidable in the near term, the first order of business will be to reassure investors about those choices and avoid precipitous action in the coming negotiations with the EU.

"Britain has a proud history of leadership in free enterprise and free trade and as a leader of the Atlantic Alliance. Redoubling this commitment to openness in trade and investment, prudent but not overbearing regulation, and close cooperation with friends and allies abroad will be essential in the months ahead.

"American companies' investments in Britain are worth more than half a trillion dollars, and many of those investments were made to reach not just British consumers but those in the European mainland as well. We are committed to working with the U.K. government to ensure that the priorities of these stakeholders are taken into account in the debates that lie ahead." — Thomas Donohue, president and CEO of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Hillary Clinton:
"We respect the choice the people of the United Kingdom have made. Our first task has to be to make sure that the economic uncertainty created by these events does not hurt working families here in America. We also have to make clear America's steadfast commitment to the special relationship with Britain and the transatlantic alliance with Europe. This time of uncertainty only underscores the need for calm, steady, experienced leadership in the White House to protect Americans' pocketbooks and livelihoods, to support our friends and allies, to stand up to our adversaries, and to defend our interests. It also underscores the need for us to pull together to solve our challenges as a country, not tear each other down."

House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI):
"I respect the decision made by the people of the United Kingdom. The UK is an indispensable ally of the United States, and that special relationship is unaffected by this vote."

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden:
"We would have preferred a different outcome."

Pharmaceutical

AstraZeneca:
"We believe that the UK remaining in the EU would be in the best interests of patients, our industry & our company, but we respect the democratic decision reached in this referendum.

"Clearly, there will now be a protracted period of transition and we will engage with all the relevant stakeholders to safeguard the competitiveness of the life sciences industry and the speed of patient access to innovative medicines" — Neil Burrows, head of global media relations

GlaxoSmithKline:
"Although the EU Referendum result creates uncertainty and potentially complexity for us in the future, we do not currently anticipate a material adverse impact on the business, Group's results or financial position. We will continue to operate as usual and will engage in the process ahead. We look forward to working closely with all relevant stakeholders. Our priority continues to be ensuring patient access to our medicines, vaccines and consumer products across the world." — GlaxoSmithKlein rep

Energy

BP:
"We respect the decision taken by the British electorate in the EU referendum.

"It is far too early to understand the detailed implications of this decision and uncertainty is never helpful for a business such as ours. However, we do not currently expect it to have a significant impact on BP's business or investments in the UK and Continental Europe, nor on the location of our HQ or our staff." —Company statement

BHP Billiton:
"The British public has voted to leave the EU, but it is not yet clear how long the formal withdrawal will take and what the new UK-EU settlement will be. We expect there will be a period of uncertainty and volatility in global markets. But BHP Billiton is resilient and has the right commodities mix and balance sheet strength to withstand periods of increased volatility." —Company statement

Manufacturing

Caterpillar:
"We acknowledge and respect the decision by the British people for the UK to leave the European Union. As a global manufacturer with a large footprint in the UK and across Europe, we call on the British government and its European partners to make all efforts to move forward swiftly to negotiate a new settlement. The UK is an intrinsic part of our European supply chain and we urge all parties to reach an agreement that quickly removes the uncertainty, allows the UK to retain full access to and from the single market and protects the interests of businesses with strong commitments and investments in the UK.

"...Caterpillar remains committed to a competitive presence in the UK and will diligently look at ways to mitigate the impact of the UK's decision to leave the EU on our valued customers, employees, shareholders and partners in our integrated supply chain." — Mark Dorsett, Caterpillar UK country manager

Automobiles

Rolls Royce:
"We respect the verdict of the electorate, although this is not the outcome we would have chosen. As we have said before, whatever the outcome of the referendum Rolls-Royce will remain committed to the United Kingdom where we have been headquartered for more than a century, where we have a talented and committed workforce and where we carry out the lion's share of our research and development.

"It is important to remember that Rolls-Royce is a global company: two thirds of our revenue and three quarters of our order book is generated outside the European Union, so the UK's decision will have no immediate impact on our day-to-day business. The medium and long term effect will depend upon the relationships that are established between the UK, the EU and the rest of the world over the coming years."

Toyota Motors:
"Going forward we will closely monitor and [analyze] the impact on our business operations in the UK, and how we can maintain competitiveness and secure sustainable growth together with the UK automotive industry and other stakeholders."

Insurance

Allianz:
"In the medium- and long-term we expect bilateral agreements between the UK and the EU in order to achieve a continued prosperous collaboration. Most negative scenarios are well reflected in market prices already. Nevertheless, the vote brings with it some short-term uncertainty, and for this reason investors are assuming higher risk premiums and hence lower prices. We believe market disruptions are short-term.

"Allianz Investment Management builds its strategies on its liabilities, coupling obligations towards clients with a careful management of risks and returns. Consequently, our portfolios are not materially affected by short-term market volatility." Andreas Gruber, Allianz chief investment officer

Stock Markets

NASDAQ:
"We are closely monitoring the global markets' reaction to the results of the U.K. referendum vote — we will act accordingly to fluctuations in volatility as necessary. Maintaining resiliency across all our markets for our customers and partners is at the absolute forefront for us."

NYSE:
"Pre-market trading is orderly but heavier than usual. We are prepared for the market opening with all systems operating normally."